Taking the responsibility to plan for and educate your own children is a huge commitment. I often think that it is a full time job, but in reality it is only a portion of the job to which God has called homeschooling moms.
This week’s 4 Moms, 35 Kids topic is keeping up with housework in the midst of homeschooling.
Use God’s Standard
It’s particularly difficult in today’s society of ‘Better Homes and Gardens‘ decorating and an emphasis on certain standards of education (1 Cor. 1:26-27) to keep our eyes on Jesus and adopt His standard as our own.
Our homes are to be safe places of comfort, offering hospitality to those around us. It doesn’t mean there is no need for beauty, but our goal and purpose isn’t to make the pages of a magazine but to offer humble service to others.
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction. (Prov. 1:7)
God’s standard of education isn’t that our children pass the standardized achievement tests, but that they learn to fear the Lord and accept instruction.
Do your children accept and even rejoice when you offer instruction or is their first reaction to discount it or act as if they don’t need it? If you haven’t taught this, then you’ve missed the very beginning of knowledge.
Ask Your Husband
What is your husband’s standard for education? What is your husband’s standard for housework? Mark is the one who provides us with perspective and balance. He knows when we need to say ‘no’ and he knows when we can or need to do it all. He helps to prioritize, schedule and plan and provides leadership in all areas.
This must flow out of #1. If we are striving to follow God’s standards then our daily decisions will look differently than those who are pursuing ‘House Beautiful‘ or Aristotle.
When I read in Titus 2 that older women are to teach younger women to be “keepers at home”, I believe that I have an obligation to say this, even though it will be probably be unpopular. I believe that being a “keeper at home” involves actually being AT home. Being at home makes it much easier to clean the house and get dinner on the table.
The fact that Titus feels the need to command this type of teaching indicates that it probably goes against what younger women naturally desire.
When our children were young Mark and I had only one car. I believe that this was a blessing of God to our family. I used the car perhaps one or two days a month and other than that and church on Sunday, I was at home with the children. This forced me to be content with my children and God as companions, taught me to love being at home and I learned to make-do with what we already had and I’m sure it saved us plenty of money. Even today, outside of cross country season, it’s rare that we leave home more than one time during the week.
I once read that children who are accustomed to running from one activity to the next are less content to be home-centered as adults. What our children learn today shapes who they are tomorrow. If they are unaccustomed to a home-centered life as a child, a home-centered life may have little appeal when they reach adulthood.
As always I encourage you to go to the Scriptures and see if these things be so.
School Year Round
Since our goal for educating our children is to follow the pattern found in Deut. 6:4-9, year round education is an obvious choice. In our experience this makes it easier to keep balanced in all areas. More about how we school year round.
Train the Help
It takes more time and effort initially, but training your children to participate in household responsibilities not only provides them with valuable training, but also makes it possible for your family to eventually be producers rather than consumers. More info about training kids to participate in chores.
Have a Plan
After you know your standard and have set your priorities it’s time to make a plan, both for homeschooling and for home keeping. We’ve found that having regular times throughout the day when we focus on academics and house keeping works well for us.
Be sure to visit the other 4 Moms to read what they have to say about this topic: